Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Smart Shopping: Cell Phone
A lot of parents want to make sure their children are safe, and for many that means getting them a cell phone. But buying the right plan can make all the difference. So today, Seven's Robbin Simmons is showing us how to start saving on your next cell phone bill. Let's go Smart Shopping.
WSVN -- They may be kids, but they know best when it comes to the latest cell phone gizmos.
Ernest: "I like it because it has a camera, and I can take pictures with my friends at school."
Ian: "I like to look for a phone that's easy for text messaging."
Tweens and teens are using their thumbs in full force.
Susan Merry: "I'm communicating with them much better because I've learned to text, and they tend to respond versus answering the phone."
And if you're a parent paying the bill, you know the extra texting and talking can cost you big bucks at the end of the month.
Smart Shoppers know you have to know how and when your kids will be using the phone before you ever pick one out.
Kelly Starling, AT&T: "The key to making sure you get the right phone for your child is to determine how the child is going to be using the device."
You also need to shop around for plans that fit what your child likes to do, like surf the web.
Kelly Starling: "A lot of kids will access social networks today or if they're planning to take pictures or they're planning to play games."
If you have multiple children on cell phones, you may want to look into family plans.
Valiencia: "Sometimes, if you get an additional line, the second line can be free of service."
Kelly Starling: "A lot of the plans allow you to share minutes, so if dad hasn't used all of his minutes, and Tommy is out of his, then you can get some of dad's minutes."
And always be on the lookout for extra savings.
Valencia: "I actually like instant rebates, which you get right now. He got a free phone."
For some, the best deal may be a prepaid phone.
Kelly Starling: "There is no commitment required, and say you only want to spend $50 a month on your child's wireless service, then you would pay for $50 worth of minutes."
Also, parents, remember you can track your child's talk time by logging on to your provider's website. That way you can make sure they don't go over minutes and cost you big bucks. Also, don't forget about parental controls.
Kelly Starling: "One of the options we offer is Smart Limits. It lets the parents go in and determine what hours of the day their child can use the phone, the dollar amount of downloads they can have each month."
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